Susa was an ancient city of the Proto-Elamite, Elamite, First Persian Empire, Seleucid, and Parthian empires of Iran, and one of the most important cities of the Ancient Near East. It is located in the lower Zagros Mountains about 250 km (160 mi) east of the Tigris River, between the Karkheh and Dez Rivers.
The modern Iranian town of Shush is located at the site of ancient Susa. Shush is the administrative capital of the Shush County of Iran’s Khuzestan province.
Archeologists have dated the first traces of an inhabited Neolithic village to c 7000 BCE. Evidence of a painted-pottery civilization has been dated to c 5000 BCE. Painted ceramic vessels from Susa in the earliest first style are a late, regional version of the Mesopotamian Ubaid ceramic tradition that spread across the Near East during the fifth millennium B.C.
Shortly after Susa was first settled over 6000 years ago, its inhabitants erected a temple on a monumental platform that rose over the flat surrounding landscape. The exceptional nature of the site is still recognizable today in the artistry of the ceramic vessels that were placed as offerings in a thousand or more graves near the base of the temple platform.